Kolkata, Nov 21 (IANS) After Brazilian football legend Zico’s rant about not allowing his team FC Goa a ground to train in, hosts Atletico de Kolkata (ATK) made quick arrangements and provided the visitors the Mohun Bagan ground to practice on Saturday evening.
The two teams clash in an Indian Super League (ISL) encounter at the Salt Lake stadium on Sunday and Goa were denied permission to have access to the ground a day before.
“In regard to the practice schedule on Match Day 1, Atlético de Kolkata respects the league’s decision for requesting both teams Atlético de Kolkata and FC Goa for not practising at the Salt Lake Stadium today (Saturday).
“FC Goa wanted to practice at the same time as ATK at the Bidhan Nagar Municipal Ground and since their request came yesterday (Friday) night, ATK immediately made arrangements for the away team to practice at the Mohan Bagan Ground. And this was accepted by FC Goa,” said ATK secretary Subrata Talukdar in a release.
Earlier in the day Zico lambasted ATK for not providing them with a practice venue.
According to the rules of the tournament, the opponents should be given a chance to train for atleast 45 minutes before match-day and that did not happen.
“According to the rules the hosts should provide us with a suitable place to practice and we could not practice here in the stadium. But if you are in Goa it isn’t like that, we respect our opponents and even if we don’t train at the pitch in Fatorda we let our rivals train,” Zico had said via his interpreter in the pre-match media conference.
“The hosts have not respected the rule of the ISL. I wasn’t supposed to come here (for the media conference) but then for all of you (media persons) I decided to come,” he added.